Deputy Education Minister in charge of Tertiary Education has instructed senior high schools (SHS) across the country to remain open throughout this weekend.
Dr Yaw Osei Adumtwum explained that this is to afford newly admitted students who are yet to register the opportunity to do so.
He told Joy News, 70 percent out of the 427,000 students who qualified for placement but were not placed initially have successfully been placed.
According to the Deputy Minister, so far 110,000 students out of the 156,000 students who did not get placement and were using the self-placement portal have successfully selected their schools.
A number of desperate parents thronged the offices of the Education Ministry as well District Education offices to ensure that their wards do not miss out on the Free SHS program.
Some of the students narrated their frustration and disinterest in the schools they were placed. According to them, some of the schools lack basic amenities.
One student also spoke about how her grades kept changing each time she changed her placement.
In a related development, the Deputy Minister said funds for the programme will be wired to the schools’ accounts by the close of business on Friday.
She confirmed to Joy News that the Ministry is waiting for the Ghana Education Service (GES) to alert them of the placements made to the 646,000 SHSs so they wire the funds to their accounts.
Abena Osei Asare said the Finance Ministry is working hard to ensure that 50 percent of the initial funds of ¢486 million for September to December has been provided to ensure government’s flagship programme succeeds.
“We have spoken to the various banks concerned and we believe they will act immediately the money hits their accounts and inform the various SHSs,” she said.
She also assured that there is a reliable revenue stream to sustain the programme.
Free SHS Bible
The 55th Annual Conference of Heads of Assisted Secondary Schools (CHASS) underway in Ho in the Volta region has asked government to prepare a 'Free SHS Bible' for Heads of Schools.
The ‘Bible they said will contain clear-cut written guidelines to ensure heads do not overstep their bounds in the implementation of the policy.
Responding to this request, Dr Adutwum said although GES has distributed some manuals, CHASS has indicated that they needed something “more comprehensive and detailed to guide them.”
He said he does not have any problem with their request and the Service will go ahead to provide them with the ‘Bible’ to enable them implement the policy to the letter.
Heads of the schools are also asking government to make payments for the arrears for the subsidies for the past two terms.
These are monies they have to pay their supplies to give them the opportunity to have the free mind to carry out government’s policy.
According to Joy News’ Hubert Mawuli Yevu-Agbi, members of CHASS have given a lot of assurances as to their preparedness to help government’s policy which they described as a good policy.